SOURCE: Entropia Universe

October 04, 2007 13:39 ET

Paynova Expands Cooperation With MindArk in Virtual World Entropia Universe

GOTHENBURG, SWEDEN--(Marketwire - October 4, 2007) - During October, Paynova (NGM: PAY) will be supplying the first newly-developed payment service adapted for the online gaming segment. The launch will take place in cooperation with the Swedish company MindArk in their virtual world Entropia Universe.

MindArk operates virtual world Entropia Universe, which is one of the world's first MMOG (Massive Multiplayer Online Game) with a real cash economy. The market growth for MMOG gaming for PC is estimated to reach over 30 percent per annum by 2009. During 2006, the global payment volume was over SEK 30 billion, and this market is estimated to reach over SEK 80 billion by 2011. The partnership between Paynova and MindArk has been in existence since 2004, allowing participants in Entropia Universe to use Paynova's service for payments both outside and inside the virtual world.

During October 2007, the cooperation between MindArk and Paynova will be expanded in order to increase the number of payment options within Entropia Universe. Participants will be offered payments via debit card, Internet bank and a number of local payment methods in Sweden, the Netherlands and Germany. At the same time, Paynova's one2one additional service will be implemented, further simplifying participant payments both when entering and within the virtual world.

"Being able to accept payments over the Internet is a prerequisite for our entire business. Paynova has supplied us with a stable, secure payment service for a number of years. It's great that we can now expand the cooperation with more payment methods and new functions. Paynova also gives us the option of accepting more payment methods as they become available without the need for further development from our side," says Carl Uggla, Chief Marketing Officer at MindArk.

"We have worked hard on preparing our new offer for online gaming. The payment service has only been in place a short time, and it is, therefore, particularly valuable to be able to implement it fully with a significant player within the segment. We view the expanded cooperation with MindArk as proof of the competitiveness of our new payment service and as an important basis for continued success in the growing online gaming segment," says Karl Alberts, Marketing Manager at Paynova.

STRONG OFFER FOR GAMING COMPANIES WITHIN THE ONLINE GAMING SEGMENT

Paynova's newly-developed one2one additional service is one of a small number on the market that supports the gaming industry's two dominant business models: payment via subscription and payment via "pay-per-component." Regardless of the business model or combination used, one2one also allows players to carry out transactions within the game using the same payment service. In addition, one2one can reduce fraud to very low levels.

Paynova's payment service offers numerous benefits to online gaming companies. With Paynova, the proportion of new players who can continue playing by applying pay-per-component can be increased, while also strengthening the attraction of the game thanks to an improved gaming experience. Gaming companies can also reduce their costs associated with handling several payment services with different redeemers, reduce or eliminate payment fraud and completely avoid the costs of individual PCI certification (required for handling payments by Visa and MasterCard).

About Paynova

Paynova offers an international, account-based, one-stop-shop for payment services on the Internet. With Paynova as the single source, e-retailers get a turnkey payment service for 21 international and local payment methods in 11 languages and 8 currencies with consumer support in a security-certified interface (PCI). Consumers can open an online Account, a Paynova Wallet, for free, to make purchases simpler and more secure, as well as handling fund transfers between family members and friends. Paynova has been listed on NGM Equity since February 2004 and carries agreements with over 1,400 e-retailers, primarily in travel, retail and online games. For more information: www.paynova.com

About MINDARK

MindArk PE AB operates, develops, and markets the Entropia Universe. More than a game, Entropia Universe is a 3d virtual universe on the Internet for online entertainment, social networking and E-commerce using Entropia's real cash economy. Entropia Universe was launched in 2003 and has over 635,000 registered accounts. The company has been profitable since 2004. MindArk offers the Entropia Universe software to users free of charge with no monthly costs or associated subscription fees. For more information or to download the free Entropia Universe software please visit www.entropiauniverse.com. For more information about Entropia Universe's developer, MindArk, please visit www.MindArk.com.

About ENTROPIA UNIVERSE

The heart of Entropia Universe is a distant planet named Calypso, which encompasses two continents with animal-filled wildernesses and large expanding cities that offer a variety of entertainment and social interaction for its participants. In Entropia, participants can create their own persona, or avatar, via a character-generation system, and then have the option of choosing a suitable life and virtual existence for their avatar. Characters are able to enter the evolving worlds of Entropia Universe, which are full of unexplored and uncultivated lands. Participants can join a community or even create a civilization of their own. Entropia offers a new avenue for individuals to pursue dreams, fantasies, and adventures in an astoundingly 'real' virtual universe.

Entropia Universe is the only virtual gaming community in the world that actively supports sales of virtual products with actual cash value within its real economy system. The economy offers the user a secure and safe way to make purchases, sales and exchange real-life currency into PED (Project Entropia Dollars) and back again into real money, at a fixed exchange rate to the US Dollar, guaranteed by MindArk PE AB. PED allows members to invest in personal development and growth through the acquisition of goods, buildings, and land in the virtual universe. In 2006, the Entropia Universe turnover was a staggering $365,000,000.

In December 2004, Entropia Universe set a world record certified by the Guinness Book of World Records, when it sold a virtual Treasure Island for US $26,500, the largest virtual dollar amount spent, to 22-year-old Australian David Storey, a.k.a. "Deathifier." In October 2005, the sale of an asteroid-based space resort for US $100,000 to famed gamer, Jon 'NEVERDIE' Jacobs, set a new record for the most valuable virtual item. In May 2007, MindArk sold five virtual banking licenses for over US $400,000 to a diverse group of buyers including real world banks and financial establishments as well as Entropia participants. In June 2007, MindArk announced a partnership with Chinese company CRD with plans to launch Entropia Universe to the Chinese market in 2008, thus creating a billion-dollar virtual environment.

Contact Information

  • MEDIA CONTACTS:

    Entropia Universe:
    Elina Heng
    Terpin Communications
    Telephone: +1 (310) 821 6100, extension 108
    Email: Email Contact

    Paynova:
    Karl Alberts
    Marketing Manager
    Telephone: +46 (0)70-33 55 326